Bruno De Julio, Galen Ho’o, and Molly Jo Rosen‘s Ronin Dax captured the lead from Perregaux in late stretch to take the $52,490 Friday night feature at Churchill Downs by a half length.

Trained by David Vance and ridden by Corey Lanerie, the 3-year-old son of Tapit covered the mile over a “good” Matt Winn Turf Course in 1:38.54. The win was Lanerie’s third of the day and a meet-leading 18th victory at Churchill Downs this spring.

Ronin Dax, the fourth choice in the field of seven, rated just off fractions of :24.51, :48.15, 1:13.10 and 1:25.50 set by the Neil Howard-trained Perregaux, who held a clear lead in the stretch before being caught by Ronin Dax.

The race, which was Ronin Dax’s second start at Churchill Downs in eight days, was worth $32,100 to the winner and increased his bankroll to $108,514 with a record of 3 wins from 8 starts.  

Racing continues Saturday with an 11-race program that kicks off at 12:45 p.m. ET. The Grade III, $100,000 Louisville Handicap for older horses at 1 ½ miles on turf is the featured 10th race, which has a scheduled post time of 5:29 p.m. ET. Also, popular 10-year-old gelding Brass Hat, who retired earlier this week, will be saluted in the winner’s circle one final time during a ceremony following Race 5.

Churchill Downs, the world’s most legendary racetrack, has conducted Thoroughbred racing and presented America’s greatest race, the Kentucky Derby, continuously since 1875. Located in Louisville, the flagship racetrack of Churchill Downs Incorporated (NASDAQ: CHDN) also operates Trackside at Churchill Downs, which offers year-round simulcast wagering at the historic track. Churchill Downs will conduct the 138th running of the Kentucky Derby on May 5, 2012. The track’s 2011 Spring Meet opened April 30 and continues through July 4. Churchill Downs has hosted the Breeders’ Cup World Championships a record seven times and the event will return to the track for its next renewal on Nov. 4-5, 2011. Information about Churchill Downs can be found on the Internet at www.churchilldowns.com.

- END -

Sign up for race updates, wagering tips, and inside news
Thank you to our sponsor